Thursday, July 23, 2009

80s fashion redux

This is an 80s moment in fashion.

It has been coming for some time: First there was a shoulder pad or two, then some neon brights and outgoing prints. Now, for fall 2009, there is a veritable cavalcade of designers working with 80s themes. Of course, designers working in the 80s successfully mined previous eras' themes too, so even in that sense the 80s helped set the stage for current trends.

At the beginning of the 80s we were coming out of a recession and there seemed to be twin needs for classic quality and ebullient excess. Likewise, we are starting to see the first glimmer of light at the end of our current recessionary tunnel. Designers seem torn between responding to a woman's need to get and keep work, with quality work-worthy wear, and society's need to just forget about it all for a little while in a flight of sartorial fancy.

Gaultier for Herm├Ęs, 2009 and Louis Dell'Olio for Anne Klein II, 1986

80s Lacroix and 2009 Marc Jacobs

Several years ago I showed some of my clippings from the 80s and described my favorite trends of the 80s. Some of these are so relevant now that I am compelled to repost these, hoping not too many current readers of my blog will have already seen these.

I am adding a few new notes and photos to my previous posts.

Starting with my post of April 8, 2006:

I want to show you some images that I clipped as favorites in the 1980s, almost all from Elle Magazine, which had a heyday in the 80s. The black and white images are from the inspiring book Vogue Modern Style - How to Achieve It by Charlotte Du Cann, 1988.

I sorted my clippings into these topics, to be covered slowly but surely:

The Emergence of Gaultier
Japanese style
Non-traditional beauty
Outgoing jewelry
Vintage inspirations

ATHLETICISM was the look of well-exercised models, exuding health and fitness, even power. There was a huge uptick in stretch fabric development and use, lending an athletic fit to so many garments. Athletic looks were mixed with traditional clothing in eclectic combinations. Sporty stripes were everywhere, as were leggings and stretch pants.

July 23, 2009:

I'm sure we've all witnessed the return of leggings over the past several years, and for fall, many designers are leaning on, well, lean. A particularly 80s feel is achieved by Alexander Wang in his Ready-to-Wear collection, such as with this outfit's geared-up narrow pants and bolero jacket.


Jessica / Lola Vintage said...

Love your post. Having been a child of the 80's myself, these were the clothes that I couldn't wait to wear when I grew up! That fashion has always defined "cool" for me. :)

Unknown said...

My question is -- are full blown EYEBROWS coming back, too?

I'd just LOVE to see people wearing something, ANYTHING but "jeans & t-shirt". I'm so sick of CASUAL clothes!

denisebrain said...

Lola, I'm with you. Some may say there were some awkward trends (huge shoulder pads and over-permed hair are often mentioned) but the best still looks cool. Stay tuned for more of my favorites from the 80s.

denisebrain said...

The eyebrows? I am guessing not Kristine. I'll try to remember eyebrows when I get to the subject of non-traditional beauty. In this regard, I don't think we have anything on the 80s.

Of course, you live at the wellspring of casual culture in Southern California...and I know you're doing all you can to crusade for something other than jeans and t-shirt dressing!